Squirrel Control: How to Keep Squirrels Out

The Damage Squirrels Can Do and How To Keep Them Out of Your House

Squirrels are cute when they’re running around outside but are not so cute when they’ve entered your home.  Squirrels are difficult to control because of their ability to enter small and high spaces.  They are known to get into houses by using tree limbs and even power lines to squeeze their way into the smallest openings, chimneys, or vents.  Once squirrels are inside they can cause significant damage and contaminate your home.

Squirrels can cause considerable damage to your property.  Their gnawing can damage wires (leading to power outages and potential house fires), holes in the structure (allowing other pests/rodents entry into the home) and damage or contaminate insulation.  They can invade and damage items that you may have stored away, including storage boxes and their content.  Outside items like electrical boxes and phone cables can also become a victim of squirrel damage.

In addition to property damage, squirrels can contaminate your property.  Contamination from their fur, urine, and droppings can damage insulation, items in storage, electrical wiring, among other things.

Although squirrels are a threat all year, the cooler months, when they seek warmth and shelter, are a main concern.  Prevention is the key to squirrel control:

  • Locate and seal off any entry points 1/4″ or larger to prevent squirrels and other rodents from entering the home.
  • Caulk any openings or crevices that can be used as entry points.
  • Provide an exclusive barrier on roofline.
  • Set traps if you suspect you may have a squirrel, or other rodent, in your home.
  • To keep squirrels from using utility wires as a way to your attic, slit a 2-foot section of 2-inch PVC pipe lengthwise and slip it over the wire. This makes squirrels unable to maintain their footing when the pipe rotates.
  • Cut back tree limbs that are close to your structure.
  • Squirrel removal is not recommended for amateurs. Call Northwest Exterminating for squirrel removal.
Northwest Exterminating
830 Kennesaw Ave MariettaGA30060 USA 
 • 888-466-7849
 

Keep Wildlife in the Wild, Not in Your Home

Animals looking for winter shelter find human homes a little too appealing

Watching from your kitchen as squirrels and other wildlife run around the back yard can be amusing, but finding these animals frantically scurrying in your attic or garage is anything but funny. Northwest Exterminating wants to remind homeowners to be aware that all kinds of nuisance critters are looking to stay warm this season and may try to gain access to the home.

Finding any wildlife in your home can be an unpleasant experience. It is important to remember that these animals are wild and shouldn’t be handled without the help of a professional animal removal company. In fact, they can bite, claw or scratch if they feel threatened and you don’t know if they are harboring a disease.

Homeowners should do a careful check along the outside of the home to close up any gaps or entry points. The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) recommends the following tips to specifically keep nuisance wildlife in the great outdoors where they belong:

  • Seal any cracks or crevices with caulk and steel wool, and pay special attention to holes in the structure that lead to dark secluded areas, like attics and belfries.
  • Screen attic vents and openings to chimneys.
  • Install door sweeps.
  • Repair any loose siding or shingles.
  • Store trashcans and recycling bins indoors, or in sealed areas such as a locked shed or outhouse. If trashcans are kept outdoors, use animal-proof lids.
  • Bring pet food dishes inside at night to avoid attracting wildlife.
  • Keep tree limbs cut back at least six to eight feet from the roofline.

For more information on wildlife animal removal and how to protect your home, visit www.callnorthwest.com.

Source: PPMA

 

Helpful Tips to Keep Wildlife our of Your Home

Tips to Keep Wildlife out of Your Home

In our last blog we discussed the potential health threats and property damage that animals can cause when they enter your home.  We’re not talking about dogs and cats here, we’re talking about the animals that belong in the wild: bats, raccoons, squirrels , mice, opossums, and other wildlife.  With the cold temperatures we are starting to experience, it’s a prime time for wild animals to seek warmth and shelter in homes.

Here are some helpful tips on how to keep wildlife out of your home:

  • Take out the trash regularly and ensure that the container is tightly sealed.
  • Cut back tree limbs from your house.  Animals can use these to gain entry to your home.
  • Properly seal any vents or openings around the home that animals could use as entry points.
  • Remove standing water from your yard.  This includes bird baths, pooled water areas, and pet water bowls.
  • Never leave pet food and water bowls outside.  These can attract wildlife.
  • Remove debris from your lawn.
  • Install chimney caps so wildlife can’t enter your chimney.

If you hear wildlife in your home, it is best to call a professional animal removal company.  Some animals can get aggressive when they feel they are being threatened.  Northwest’s wildlife control specialist can help to remove the animal, seal off entry points, and help you to ensure that other wildlife do not return.

 

Fall & Winter Brings Wildlife Into Homes

Cold Weather Has Wildlife Seeking Shelter in Homes

Those furry little creatures are cute outdoors but they somehow turn into scary monsters when they’re scurrying through your attic, basement, or even your walls.  During the fall and winter months different wildlife can make their way into houses seeking warmth from the outside cold.

SquirrelCommon invaders like squirrels, bats, raccoons, and possums can be a threat to your health, property, and even your safety.  These animals can carry diseases and can even get aggressive when they feel threatened.  They can damage your property by gnawing on sheet rock, wood, insulation, storage containers, and wiring (a potential fire hazard).

There are easy steps to take that will help keep animals out of your home for the colder seasons: take trash out regularly and seal tightly and cut back tree limbs from your roof line.  Animals, especially squirrels, use tree limbs as an entry to your home.  Look for gnaw marks and feces and listen for scurrying sounds as indicators that you may have unwanted guests in your home.

Because these animals have a potential to be dangerous, it is best to call a wildlife removal company to properly remove these animals.  Call Northwest Exterminating for animal removal.

 

August Pest of the Month: Ticks

It’s important to protect yourself and your pets from ticks this season!  Keep reading for more information on the little suckers!

tick

BRIEF DESCRIPTION

  • Size varies depending on the species and type.
  • More closely related to spiders than insects.
  • Can have either a soft or a hard body.
  • Usually brought into homes by animals.
  • Feed on animals and humans for their blood meal.

HABITS

  • Live in low lying areas such as grass, shrubs, and bushes while waiting for a passing host to attach themselves on to.
  • Female ticks have about 3,000 eggs in the spring time.
  • Ticks feed on humans, mice, squirrels, raccoons, skunks, dogs, and birds.

SPECIES

  • American dog tick
  • Blacklegged/deer/bear tick
  • Brown dog tick
  • Lone Star Tick
  • Rocky Mountain Wood Tick

THREATS

  • Ticks attach themselves to animals or humans to obtain their blood meal by biting the victim.
  • Can cause irritation around the site of the bite, allergic reaction, or cause the mouth parts to get stuck in the skin when the tick is removed.
  • Known to transfer Lyme disease, anaplasmosis, and babesiosis.

PREVENTION

  • When in wooded areas or tall grass, wear long pants, long sleeves, and closed toed shoes.
  • Use a bug repellant that contains DEET.
  • Keep grass and other vegetation on your property properly cut and maintained.
  • Inspect yourself for ticks after being outdoors.
  • Inspect your pets for ticks after being outdoors.
  • If you find a tick, use tweezers to remove the tick with a slow, gentle, upward pressure.

OTHER PESTS TO LOOK OUT FOR

Call Northwest Exterminating for information on how to protect your home and loved ones from ticks.

 

 

Venomous Snakes Common to GA and Other Parts of the Southeast

Northwest’s Wildlife Services Team specializes in the exclusion, removal, and control of animal nuisances. Among our specialties are squirrels, rodents, raccoons, opossums, bees, armadillos, and chipmunks. An important wildlife service in the coming warm months is our snake removal! Our Wildlife team uses a Green product that is used to deter snakes.  We also spend a great deal of time educating the customer on snakes.

Georgia is among the states with the highest biodiversity of snakes in the U.S. with 43 different species. They are located anywhere in Georgia from the mountains in the north to the barrier islands along our eastern coast. Below we have pictures and descriptions of the most common venomous snakes. If you spot one of these, call our Wildlife Services Team at 770.436.3362 to get them off your hands, or better yet, remove them very far away from your hands!

Copperhead

copperhead

Copperhead

Copperheads are fairly large – anywhere from 2 to over 3 feet long! They have brown, triangular heads and elliptical pupils. You likely won’t want to get close enough to be sure, but they have two tiny dots at the center of the top of the head. More distinguishing features include yellow tails for juvenile snakes, and the brown bands that run along their body are in a distinct hourglass shape. They are found mostly in the forested areas of Georgia and South Carolina.

Cottonmouth/Water Moccasin

cottonmouth

Cottonmouth

Water Moccasin

Water Moccasin

Just like copperheads, cottonmouths have large, triangular heads with elliptical pupils. They get the name water moccasin from their semi-aquatic nature and are likely to be found by mostly all types of freshwater habitats.  These are more difficult to identify by appearance because they have a wide range of colors but tend to feature colors that will camouflage them into their habitats.

Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake

Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake

Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake

Eastern diamondbacks are among the largest of 32 species of rattlesnakes, ranging anywhere from 2.75 feet to 6 feet long. They have large, broad heads with two light lines on their faces. These are easily recognized by their brown diamonds, surrounded by lighter colored brown, tan or yellowish scales. They can be located anywhere from the southern part of North Carolina, but especially in South Georgia and Florida. They like to be in drier, sandy or low cut grass areas and tend to avoid wetter areas, though they are great swimmers and even travel through saltwater!

Canebrake/Timber Rattlesnake

Canebrake-timber rattlesnake

Canebrake-timber rattlesnake

These snakes tend to range from about 3-5 feet in length and are usually gray with a pink, yellow, orange or brown stripe running along their back. They have solid black tails and black chevrons along the back and sides of their body with the point of the (V) pointing forward. They are found in most of the eastern United States, but are somewhat absent from Florida. They can be found in a wide range of areas, but are least likely to be found in highly urbanized or residential areas.

Pigmy Rattlesnake

Pigmy rattlesnake

Pigmy rattlesnake

This rattlesnake is on the smaller side, usually coming in at under 2 feet in length. This snake has 9 large scales on the top of it’s head and a tiny rattle that can rarely be heard. They have a row of mid-dorsal spots and a bar from the eye to their mouth that ranges from black to brownish. The name is deceptive as they can be gray, tan, lavender, orange, red, or even black. These are mostly located from central Georgia up throughout South Carolina. They also like to be near water sources like creeks, marshes, and swamps.

Eastern Coral Snake

Coral Snake

Coral Snake

“Red on yellow, kills a fellow. Red on black, friend of Jack.” These snakes are sometimes up to 4 feet in length with smooth heads with a bright body pattern of black rings in which the red and yellow rings touch each other. These are sometimes confused with king snakes, but these snakes only have the red touching the black rings and are not venomous. These snakes are found all the way from Louisiana to Florida, where they are most prevalent. They are rarely spotted because they hide under ground and spend only a limited time crawling above ground. Unfortunately, because of these secretive habits, coral snakes tend to persist in suburban areas.

 

Melissa Brown
mbrown@callnorthwest.com

Sources:

http://georgiawildlife.com/node/497

https://uga.edu/srelherp/snakes/index.htm

http://srelherp.uga.edu/snakes/pics/agkcon210.jpg

http://srelherp.uga.edu/snakes/pics/agkpis210.jpg

http://srelherp.uga.edu/snakes/pics/agkpis4.jpg

http://srelherp.uga.edu/snakes/pics/croada210.jpg

http://srelherp.uga.edu/snakes/pics/crohor3.jpg

http://srelherp.uga.edu/snakes/pics/sismil210.jpg

http://www.petmd.com/sites/default/files/coral_snake.gif

 

 

Northwest Exterminating’s 2013 Pest Calendar

Northwest Exterminating recently added another tool to our website that will benefit business and homeowners.  The 2013 Pest Calendar is available for printing and download on our site.  Each month we highlight a particular pest that is often seen at that time of the year.  Along with a visual reference, we offer some little known facts about the pest.

We cover squirrels, cockroaches, termites, carpenter bees, mosquitoes, bed bugs, fire ants, fleas/ticks, stink bugs/kudzu bugs, spiders, rats, and raccoons.

We hope this will serve as a useful tool to our customers and those that visit our site at www.callnorthwest.com

Go to our website and check out our 2013 Pest Calendar!

Pest Calendar

 

January’s Pest of the Month – Squirrels

Gray Squirrel

Unwanted House Guests in Your Attic This Winter?

They may look cute and furry but squirrels can cause major damage if they take up residency in your home. One of the first clues that people experience is the sound of scratching, clawing, gnawing, or scurrying in their attic or walls. If you think you may have unwanted visitors in your home, call Northwest Exterminating.

Habits

  • Natural habitat is wooded areas
  • Often make home in attics or garages for warmth, shelter, food, and a place to build their nests

Different Species

Threats

  • Urine and droppings can contaminate insulation and other areas of the attic
  • Can damage contents of attic including wood, insulation, wires, and storage boxes
  • Can cause damage to power lines outside of the home
  • Invade bird feeder

Prevention

  • Locate and seal off any entry points 1/4″ or larger to prevent squirrels and other rodents from entering your home.
  • Caulk any openings or crevices.
  • To keep squirrels from using utility wires as a way to your attic, slit a 2-foot section of 2-inch PVC pipe lengthwise and slip it over the wire.This makes squirrels unable to maintain their footing when the pipe rotates.
  • Cut back tree limbs that are close to your structure.
  • Squirrel removal is not recommended for amateurs. Call the professionals at Northwest Exterminating.

Other Pests to Look For

 

Hibernation

Wildlife ControlChanging temperatures means changes in the types of pest you may see around your area. One of the reasons you may soon see certain pests less is because of hibernation. Hibernation is a period of inactivity in animals during which they experience lower body temperatures, slower breathing and lower metabolic rates. Most people think that hibernation is just an animal sleeping but it’s more about the animal conserving energy during winter when food supplies are limited.

To prep for hibernation, animals spend the autumn foraging for food, which means they might be around or even inside your home searching for a treat! Animals that spend the autumn prepping for hibernation include bats, chipmunks, squirrels, raccoons, skunks, and bears. In addition, cold-blooded critters hibernate too because the cold weather causes their body temperatures to drop. These animals include bees, earthworms, frogs, toads, lizards, turtles, snails and snakes. You won’t have to worry worry about these animals foraging for food as they tend to hide away around the time autumn hits.

Make sure not to tempt these animals on to your property by maintaining a clean home and making sure the trash is not easily accessible. Northwest Exterminating can help guard your home by providing services such as Complete CrawlSpace and TAP Attic Insulation. If you are interested in this service or more, please visit us at www.callnorthwest.com!

Sources:

 

What’s the big deal about wildlife exclusion?

Some people think that when the temperatures drop, they will have less pest issues. For some critters this may be true, as they use the autumn to store up for a cold winter, during which they hide away. However, some of the larger animals such as squirrels, raccoons, possums, etc., might want to use your home for a warm space to hide away from the weather. Northwest Exterminating’s Wildlife Team knows just what to do in order to keep your home a pest-free zone!

Depending on what type of animals may be in your area, they can leave you susceptible to various issues. For instance, some squirrels like to make nests in attics, using your insulation as material! The costs of repair plus the hazards of a potential electrical fire due to damaged wires makes it really necessary to block this area off from potential unwanted guests. Aside from squirrels, other creatures have the potential to do damage in the form of bites or fleas that might affect your children or pets.

To reduce these risks against you, Northwest’s Wildlife Team specializes in wildlife exclusion. One of form of wildlife exclusion involves sealing up any potential openings to secure your home. The Wildlife Team will inspect your home, evaluating potential problem areas and implementing measures to eliminate these issues. However, if by chance your home has already gotten unsolicited attention from these pests, the Wildlife Team knows just what to do to take care of your home and prevent the issue from happening in the future. If you need a Wildlife representative, please contact us at 888-466-7849 or visit our website www.callnorthwest.com

Source: http://ezinearticles.com/?The-Importance-of-Wildlife-Exclusion&id=7352650

Melissa Brown
mbrown@callnorthwest.com